taxonomy

noun
tax·​on·​o·​my | \ tak-ˈsä-nə-mē How to pronounce taxonomy (audio) \

Definition of taxonomy

1 : the study of the general principles of scientific classification : systematics
2 : classification especially : orderly classification of plants and animals according to their presumed natural relationships

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Other Words from taxonomy

taxonomic \ ˌtak-​sə-​ˈnä-​mik How to pronounce taxonomy (audio) \ or less commonly taxonomical \ ˌtak-​sə-​ˈnä-​mi-​kəl How to pronounce taxonomy (audio) \ adjective
taxonomically \ ˌtak-​sə-​ˈnä-​mi-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce taxonomy (audio) \ adverb
taxonomist \ tak-​ˈsä-​nə-​mist How to pronounce taxonomy (audio) \ noun

Examples of taxonomy in a Sentence

the taxonomies of various plant groups
Recent Examples on the Web In the taxonomy of loss, bereavement counselors say the most difficult emotion is not sadness or regret, but uncertainty. Nora Mishanec, San Francisco Chronicle, 1 May 2021 In my mind, this almost certainly means having to identify a strong taxonomy of creators that simply can’t exist anywhere but Clubhouse. Nicholas Quah, Vulture, 11 May 2021 The highlight of this room is the full array of 87 carpenter’s tools, neatly arrayed to show their intricate taxonomy—not only hammers and saws but the staggeringly specialized tools of joinery: 20 different kinds of planes, 23 different chisels. Michael J. Lewis, WSJ, 20 Apr. 2021 And each retailer may require you to have a different taxonomy (or naming convention), which means that keeping these listings accurate and updated can be a taxing process (no pun intended). Patrick Niersbach, Forbes, 15 Apr. 2021 Having such a taxonomy, Jah says, would help sort out what types of technologies are required for removing different pedigrees of orbital clutter. Leonard David, Scientific American, 14 Apr. 2021 Singapore’s monetary authority is consulting on a potential green taxonomy for Southeast Asia, even though neighbors Malaysia and Indonesia already have their own plans. Greg Ritchie, Fortune, 27 Mar. 2021 The initial version of the taxonomy labels bioenergy as green, but doesn’t include nuclear energy and natural gas, although this may be revised. Anna Hirtenstein, WSJ, 21 Apr. 2021 The Remains of the Day unspools over a few days in the 1950s, as a butler reflects on his years of service in a grand household, at once taxonomy of English life and indictment of the nation. Rumaan Alam, The New Republic, 12 Apr. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'taxonomy.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of taxonomy

circa 1828, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for taxonomy

borrowed from French taxonomie, from Greek táxis "arrangement, order" + French -o- -o- + -nomie -nomy — more at taxis

Note: French taxonomie was a coinage of the Geneva-born botanist Augustin Pyramus de Candolle (1778-1841), in Théorie élémentaire de la botanique (Paris, 1813). Candolle divided botany into three divisions (p. 19): "… elle se compose 1.o de la Glossologie, c'est-à-dire, de la connaissance des termes par lesquels on designe les organes des plantes et leurs diverses modification; 2.o de la Taxonomie [footnote: "Mot formé de ταξις ordre, et νόμος loi, règle."], ou de la Théorie des classifications appliquée au règne végétal; 3.o de la Phytographie, ou de l'art de décrire les plantes de la manière la plus utile aux progrès de la science …" ("… it is composed of 1.o Glossology, that is, the recognition of the terms by which the organs of plants are designated, and their various modifications; ; 2.o Taxonomy [footnote: "Word formed from táxis order, and nómos law, rule."], or the theory of classifications applied to the vegetable kingdom; 3.o Phytography, or the art of describing plants in the manner most suited to the progress of science"). A more correct compounding form in terms of Greek word formation would have been taxi- (as táxis is an i-stem), and taxinomy did in fact see some use in the 19th century—though Candolle's original coinage has predominated. His parallel introductions, glossology and phytography, have rarely been employed.

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Time Traveler for taxonomy

Time Traveler

The first known use of taxonomy was circa 1828

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Statistics for taxonomy

Last Updated

11 Jun 2021

Cite this Entry

“Taxonomy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/taxonomy. Accessed 16 Jun. 2021.

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More Definitions for taxonomy

taxonomy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of taxonomy

technical : the process or system of describing the way in which different living things are related by putting them in groups

taxonomy

noun
tax·​on·​o·​my | \ tak-ˈsä-nə-mē How to pronounce taxonomy (audio) \

Kids Definition of taxonomy

: classification of living things (as plants and animals) using a system that is usually based on natural relationships

taxonomy

noun
tax·​on·​o·​my | \ tak-ˈsän-ə-mē How to pronounce taxonomy (audio) \
plural taxonomies

Medical Definition of taxonomy

1 : the study of the general principles of scientific classification : systematics
2 : orderly classification of plants and animals according to their presumed natural relationships

More from Merriam-Webster on taxonomy

Britannica English: Translation of taxonomy for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about taxonomy

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